Mason Graham, Shonta Morris, Thomas McGrady and Nicholas McGrady from South Grafton High School were performers in the Schools Spectacular.
Mason Graham, Shonta Morris, Thomas McGrady and Nicholas McGrady from South Grafton High School were performers in the Schools Spectacular. Adam Hourigan

OPINION: Delivering great achievements in life

WE NEED more superlatives. There's too few in the English language to describe the awesome experience I've just witnessed. Perhaps we need to borrow some from French or German or Mandarin.

We do have a rather rich range however: Awesome; gorgeous; stunning; fantastic; beautiful; to name a few. We could even add a few from common vernacular like mind-blowing, cool, fully-sick, and so on.

Anyway, perhaps I should explain that I've been privileged to witness a performance of talent almost unprecedented in my experience. The occasion was the 'Schools Spectacular' at the Qantas Credit Union Arena in Sydney last week. A complimentary ticket saw me sharing with 8000 others an outstanding showcase of talent vested in 3500 schoolchildren and some outstanding individual performers.

To say I was mesmerised for the entire three-hour performance would be the understatement of the year. And to top it off, I was in awe of the skills, dedication and sheer hard work of all those behind the scenes who had managed to pull off such an amazing event. The technological support was also incredible.

Am I exaggerating? Well, an opportunity exists for many others to judge for themselves. Tonight - Saturday, December 5 at 7pm - Channel 9 will be broadcasting the Schools Spectacular. So make a date with your HD flat-screen to watch the show, subtitled, "This Is Our World".

With plenty of adverse publicity surrounding the younger generation today, this is an experience that will surely engender renewed hope in the vision, commitment and talent embedded in many of our children and teenagers.

No matter what our taste in entertainment, we all love a good show. The recent 'Vivid' festival is another example, bathing many iconic Sydney landmarks in incredible patterns of light, colour and sound. Breathtaking displays of technological brilliance.

We certainly live in a world today where much of the science-fiction that fired the imaginations of previous generations has become reality. Only a few days ago I was fascinated to see a demonstration of the features of a new 'smart-watch' and felt tempted to replace my conventional watch with one of these amazing digital creations.

While technology and surreal experiences showcase the incredible growth in our abilities and in human achievement, it seems that there are also areas of our lives that remain neglected and where we appear to be going backwards.

We're not as smart as we think when it comes to the things we choose to place value on - things like spirituality and timeless and essential values such as honesty, integrity, generosity and selfless living.

So while technological progress rips through every facet of our lives, and marketing forces convince us we can no longer exist without embracing each new thing, we can appear to be left wanting in the non-negotiable basics that control human interaction.

For there is little evidence in the modern world that we have developed - or even retained - a strong sense of commitment to decency, responsibility and unswerving selflessness.

I believe the world is on notice that in these areas we really need to improve. We seem to yearn for all the latest technological gadgets that the boffins can throw at us.

We even excel in showcasing our considerable talent.

But we must also yearn to embrace every new insight into the way we can better interact with God and with each other - to build an ever stronger, ever safer and ever more love-centric world.



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